Champion Your Career: Winning in the World of Work by Halimah Bellows addresses the needs of a new generation of career seekers in a rapidly changing economy and job marketplace. Designed as self-paced career development workshop in book format, it provides self-assessment tools to enable individuals to explore their personal passions, values, strengths and skills along with sound strategies and resources for decision making, goal setting and networking to begin a fulfilling new career.
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At an early age Halimah Bellows became aware of her natural ability to listen to people non-judgmentally as well as her desire to be of service to others. In her life as an educator, a career counselor and a coach, she has been able to marry her fascination with people’s stories with her deep interest in the world of work.
A Pacific Northwest and California-based career/coach for more than 20 years, Halimah Bellows holds an MA in English Language Teaching from the University of Exeter, an MS in Counseling Psychology from San Francisco State University and received training at The Coaches Training Institute and Retirement Options to become a Certified Retirement and Professional Coach. Author of Champion Your Career: Winning in the World of Work and creator of CAREER QUEST CARDS, she is a seasoned workshop presenter, group facilitator and talk show guest.
In addition to assisting people through career transitions and supporting retirees to “retire with fire”, she also focusses on helping couples and business partnerships build powerful intentional relationships as well as empowering artists, entrepreneurs, and professionals to develop their business and achieve their dreams.
In taking your first steps to retirement, ask yourself, “To what degree do I feel I am emotionally detached from the strivings and accomplishments of the work I am about to leave behind?” How much do you see yourself defined by your work? How much is your personal worth invested in your work world?
By reflecting on these questions you will gain a clearer understanding of what you need to do to redefine and redesign your life in the process of retiring. Even if you plan to continue working on a part -time basis, your leisure time will increase. So you will be focusing on making a smooth transition from full-time work to more leisure time. After you have explored the qualities you highly enjoyed in the workplace, consider ways to fulfill those same needs in your increased leisure time. This will make your transition much less stressful and uncertain.
Champion Your Career
The Five Stages of Retirement
It has been observed that there are basically five stages to retirement. By understanding these stages you will find it easier to deal with the emotional component of retirement, a pivotal transition from an active work life to creating an identity outside the work environment. These are:
Stage 1. Anticipation–Before retiring you may experience emotions ranging from euphoria to anxiety as you think about what you will finally be able to do as well as the amount of uncertainty that each day may bring if it is not so highly structured by work. This is the planning stage, a time for considering how you will bring your dreams into fruition as you gradually disengage emotionally and physically from your work-a-day life. This stage begins well before you retire. In one recent poll (Thestreet.com from Yahoo finance), it was found that only 44 percent of those polled felt that they were on track for a fulfilling retirement.
Stage 2. Enchantment–Upon retiring you may feel like you are on a vacation and are greatly relieved of the burden of work-related responsibilities. This stage may last a few months to several years. If you have not designed your retirement well, however, this stage may be followed by boredom, anxiety or disenchantment as you meander without purpose through most of your retirement.
Stage 3. Disappointment–After vacationing for a while, a feeling of depression may surface if you are not addressing your need for a focused, meaningful life. Many retirees do have a list of projects they want to complete but usually retirement will greatly outlast most “to do” lists. Approximately 30 to 40 percent of retirees are depressed within the first years of retirement. This can lead to health problems if unattended.
Stage 4. Refocusing–Now it is time to intentionally plan for